Press Release

— Adds Skip Barber Racing School MAZDASPEED Challenge Class —

December 01, 2011 (Orlando, Fla.)  MAZDASPEED announced a partial 2012 SCCA Pro Racing Playboy MX-5 Cup Schedule at the annual Performance racing Industry Trade Show in Orlando, Florida.  It was also announced that the grids would be growing considerably with the addition of a class for Skip Barber Racing School MX-5 Cup competitors

“The 2012 MX-5 Cup will expand with the addition of a new partner, the Skip Barber Racing School.  The Skip Barber cars will add considerable depth to the fields.  While we are not ready to announce the complete schedule, we are happy to announce that we have locked in our season kick-off and finale at two of the biggest road-racing weekends in the works – Sebring and the Petit Le Mans.  We’ll also be making a stop at our home track, Mazda Raceway, and are in active discussions with another half-dozen tracks.  The final 2012 schedule will be one that will meet the needs of our fans, partners, and racers”, noted John Doonan, Director of Motorsports, Mazda North American Operations.

Skip Barber Racing School has run the MAZDASPEED Challenge race series, since 2007 for Mazda MX-5 Cup race cars.  In 2011, SBRS ran a fleet of cars at the Homestead and Road Atlanta MX-5 Cup races at Petit Le Mans with favorable feedback.  For 2012, SBRS will provide an arrive-and-drive race programs with coaching to customers who want to race at a higher level with the professionals without the required investment in capital and other resources to establish their own team.

The MX-5 Cup series champion is promoted to a series above via the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Ladder.  2011 MX-5 Cup Champion Mike Cooper will be racing a MAZDASPEED3 in the 2012 Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car Championship.  Mazda also promotes a top club racer to the MX-5 Cup.  2011 NASA Western Region Spec Miata Teen Challenge Champion Elliott Skeer will be joining the MX-5 Cup Championship in 2012.

Additional series announcements will be made in early 2012.

On any given weekend, there are more Mazdas on the road-race tracks of America than any other brand of vehicle.  At the track, you’ll see MX-5 Miata, RX-8, Mazda2, Mazda3, Mazda6, RX-7 and other vintage Mazda models competing, because every Mazda has the Soul of a Sports Car.  In fact, the largest road-racing class in the world is Spec Miata, with more than 2,500 first- and second-generation Miatas tearing up America’s racetracks, making it the most-raced production car in the world.  Mazda’s involvement in motorsports extends to its relationship with Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, one of the world’s premier road-racing circuits, the Skip Barber Racing School for driving and racing, and the Mazda Road to Indy.

North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif. and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States, Canada and Mexico through nearly 900 dealers.  Operations in Canada are managed by Mazda Canada, Inc., located in Ontario; and in Mexico by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.

For 36 years, Skip Barber Racing School LLC, has been the leader in training motorsport legends of the future through entry-level, equal car championships. The athletes are given media exposure, expert coaching, on-track arrive-and-drive experience, financial awards and motorsport scholarships. Skip Barber Racing School launched the auto racing careers of Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, Scott Speed, Jeff Gordon, A.J. Allmendinger, Raphael Matos, Conor Daly, Spencer Pigot and many more.



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